The Q&A Archives: Backyard beauty

Question: I would like to plant annuals to brighten up my green back yard. The area is partial shade in the north-end of my yard. You can see the area from my dining room so I want it to be breath-taking. Need color/species suggestions. Thank you.

Answer: In addition to splashed of color with annuals such as Mimulus, Lobelia, Impatiens, Coleus, and pansies, I hope you'll consider planting perennials as well. Obviously ferns and hosta would top the list for a shaded garden, but many flowering perennials will thrive in a such a setting. Aconitum (Monkshood), Arum, Begonia, Caladium, Campanula, Clivia miniata (Kaffir Lily), Lily-of-the-Valley, Primrose, Vancouveria, Senica, Tradescantia, Cyclamen and Asiatic Lilies are all good choices. Dicentra (Bleeding Heart) produces lovely springtime flowers, as do Campanula and Begonia.

Or you could incorporate some easy care native plants. Some shady area suggestions include Aristolochia californica (California Dutchman's Pipe), Asarum caudatum (Wild Ginger), and Lilium humboldtii (Humbolt Lily).

Best wishes with your new garden!

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